Rain left puddles on the streets in places on Oct. 9.

A record-setting dry spell came to a halt last month.

October rains totaling 1.93 inches washed away the parched weather that ruled from July through September. According to the National Weather Service, the 0.09 inches that fell between July 1 and Sept. 30 was the all-time driest for any three-month span on record.

The total precipitation for October, the first full month of fall, was 0.25 inches above normal and brought the year’s total rain and snowfall to 11.52 inches, which is 3.99 inches below normal.

Along with falling leaves, October also ushered in falling temperatures, although the first official freeze of fall has yet to occur.

The first two days of the month saw what will probably be the last 70-degree temperatures of the year, with the warmest day falling on Oct. 2, when the high was 74 degrees. After that, daytime highs stayed mostly in the mid-60s, while nighttime lows dropped into the 40s and 30s, with the coolest nights, 37 degrees, coming on Oct. 14-15.

Overall, however, average temperatures were close to normal during the month. The average high was 62.8 degrees, which was 0.7 degrees below normal, and nighttime lows averaged 44 degrees, which was 0.9 degrees above average.

The strongest wind gust was 35 mph on Oct. 2.

The outlook for this month, from the federal Climate Prediction Center, calls for above-normal temperatures and near-normal precipitation.

Normal November highs for Walla Walla decline from 56 degrees to 42 degrees by the start of December, and normal lows shift from 39 degrees to 31 degrees. The 30-year normal precipitation is 2.87 inches.

Andy Porter can be reached at andyporter@wwub.com or 526-8318.

Andy Porter has been with the Union-Bulletin since October 2000. His beats include Walla Walla County, city of College Place, Washington State Penitentiary, agriculture, environment as well as a wide range of general assignment topics.

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